This New Idea corn sheller was purchased from a retired farmer near Muscatine, IA in 2008. After retirement, it was now time to restore it to its near original condition.
New Idea purchased the Sandwich Company of Sandwich, Ill in 1930, which provided New Idea with a much larger line of farm equipment. One of the products was a very fine corn sheller. The Sandwich Company had been developing small corn sheller since 1856.
The farmer who sold the sheller indicated that he remembers seeing this sheller in the mid-1940's. Therefore it must have been made between 1930 and 1945.
The two photos below show the corn sheller as purchased and after restoring. Each of the steps listed above following show the intermediate steps that were completed to restore the New Idea corn sheller.to its near original condition.
Step 1: Corn Sheller As Received
When purchased the sheller was operational except for the plate which applies pressure to keep the corn cob in contact with the cast iron wheel that removes the kernels. The wood crank handle and fan belt were missing.
Step 2: Disassembly
Many pictures were taken during the disassembly to record information to assist in reassembly. The frame and Internal parts were very rusty as well as the frame. Some effort was required to remove the bearings from the shafts. As can be seen in the final two pictures in this step every part was removed and could then be cleaned as shown in the next step.
Step 3: Cleaning Failure
The first attempt to remove the rust from parts was by electrolytic derusting. It is a technique for returning surface rust to iron. by using the effect of a small low voltage electric current and a suitable electrolyte. As shown in the last picture, the part after 12 hours in the bath still had considerable amount of rust. Therefore the method was abandoned.
Step 4: Cleaning by Sandblasting
A sandblasting cabinet was made from a clear tote box. Two holes were made and gloves attached to box. Also ports for air hose, grit material, and vac hose were added. The device worked well and all parts were cleaned in a total of 7 hours.
Step 5: Painting
New Idea used an orange and green colors for all their equipment. Since the New Idea company in no longer in business the exact shades of these colors are not available. Rustoleum Harvest Green was used since it is a very close match. Old Kubota tractor orange matches NI orange very well.
A paint booth was built to reduce the over-spraying drift. When using a paint booth make sure it has a floor since large paint droplets will not be carried in the air but will settle out in a very short distant.
Step 6: Painting on Name
A stencil was made by sizing a stencil font on the computer and printing. The letter were then cut out with an exacto knife. The panel was covered and stencil painted.
Step 7: Making Wood Crank Handle
A new crank handle was turned on a lathe from solid oak.
Step 8: Reassembing Sheller
Lower half of sheller was assembled and then the cast gears and sheller parts inserted. After the top half was assembled the galvanized metal was masked and the bolt heads and nuts were painted orange.
The last four photos show the finished reconditioned corn sheller.